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In Brief: Single Bevel vs Dual Bevel Miter Saw
The main difference between a single bevel miter saw and a dual bevel miter saw is that a single bevel can make bevel cuts in only one direction, left or right while a dual bevel miter saw can make bevel cuts in both directions. The single bevel is portable, cheaper, slower, ideal for DIY and home decor while a dual bevel can make bevel cuts in both directions and is faster, accurate, more suited for professionals.
So you are all set to add the powerhouse Miter Saw to your tool collection but you are confused which one to buy?
Do the smooth, sharp, angled cuts leave you gaping but the different models perplex you?
How is a single bevel different from a double bevel?
Read on and find out
What is a Miter Saw?
A miter saw is a power saw that does all the jobs that a standard hand saw miter box does, just with more precision and easily.
It was invented by an American, Ed Nihaus, who worked in Rockwell manufacturing Co. under the brief of making a saw capable of making angled cuts, but little did they knew that a whole new category of power tools was born. 
A miter saw has now become a staple in almost every workshop and it’s clean, sharp, miter and bevel cuts are one to be rivaled.
It is the handiest tool to make angled cuts, which it is specialized for. A miter saw comes with an angle scale at its base, whose knob can be drawn left or right to set the angle of the saw accurately.
A miter saw is the best saw to make 2 types of cuts :
- The miter, which is an angled cut, made on the face of the wood piece.
- The bevel, which is an angled cut, made on the edge of the wood piece.
Still confused? See the Miter saw and its range of cuts in action in the following video:
You’d be correct in thinking that a miter saw can make a bevel cut, and you wouldn’t need a bevel miter saw for the same. You can make a dual bevel cut using a simple miter saw.
But, problems crop up when the workpiece you are working with is large or if you want to go for a compound cut, which is a combination of a miter and bevel cut.
This is where Single Bevel Miter Saws and Dual Bevel Miter Saws come in.
Bevel Miter Saws are power saws that can rotate in 2 planes, the base plane, and the edge plane.
In such a saw, you can set two angles, one for plane cutting, one for edge cutting and get a compound cut.
The Single Bevel Miter Saw
A single bevel miter saw can rotate in 2 planes but in the edge plane, it can rotate in only one direction. Thus, you can’t repeat cuts on the edge plane, as you will have to flip your workpiece to get the same cut on both sides.
Thus, a single bevel miter saw can make miter cuts and bevel cuts, independently and together, but you can make bevel cuts in only one direction- left or right.
To make similar cuts on both edges, you need to physically flip the workpiece and make sure the angles are correct.
A single bevel Miter saw is best for simple projects and is a lifesaver of DIY projects. It is portable and is best for jobs where wood pieces are so large that they cannot be moved.
The Dual Bevel Miter Saw
A dual bevel miter saw, on the other hand, is just like a single bevel, only it can make bevel cuts in both left and right directions.
This allows you to make repeated cuts and there is no need to physically flip your workpiece. This reduces the chances of human error and makes accurate angled cuts.
A dual bevel miter saw is best used by professionals working on a clock, and by people involved in making workpieces involving dual bevels like fancy crown moldings.
Pros of a Single Bevel Miter Saw
It is devoid of all the complexities of a dual bevel and is much simpler to operate
It is much cheaper compared to a dual bevel and is a good price to usage fit
It is ideal for fancy home decoration projects that a hobbyist might what to take up.
The cons of a single bevel miter saw are of course, that it cannot cut a bevel in both left and right directions. This reduces its speed, accuracy and increases the workload of the worker.
Thus, it is best suited for individuals who have time to complete their workpiece.
Pros of a Dual Bevel Miter Saw
It used by professionals and offers the largest range of cuts. The bevel can be cut in both directions
As there is no need to flip the workpiece, the job gets done faster and time is saved.
As there is no need to flip the workpiece, the chances of human error are reduced and cuts are more accurate
The cons of a dual bevel miter saw are its expensive price, low portability due to huge machine parts, and complexity of usage.
It is ideal for professionals who are well versed in its operation and who can convert the expense to profits.
Both the Miter Saws are powerhouses in their own right. Miter saws are a positive addition in any toolset.
While the single bevel miter saw is limited in its functionality, it is light, portable and affordable for DIY projects and some home decor.
A hobbyist would be quite satisfied with this purchase.
In contrast, a dual bevel miter saw has a huge range of cuts and is more complex and accurate than a single bevel. It is used by professionals as it is faster and does a more thorough job.
It is heavy and expensive, which might be setbacks to a person who required a miter for light jobs, but is an important investment for professionals who make a living out of this.